For some reason, I found myself thinking a lot of my first conference. Not sure why. That was in San Franscisco, a million years ago. I met my friend Liz Bevarly for the first time, and we roomed together for the first half of the week, along with Christie Ridgway (who always wins "cutest outfits" category.) Maybe that’s why. We all talked a lot about what it takes to keep a long career going, and it’s not necessarily what you imagine in year one (or year seven). We’ve all signed with new publishers this year, and discussed the ups and downs of time and the bone-satisfying pleasure of writing for a living. For decades!
It was a busy trip, so I’m sure I’ll forget some other great moments, but here are a few:
–Meeting with a group of writers who have met through the Girls in the Basement and the voice classes. Naturally, I had pictured almost everyone in a different way.
–The Libarian’s Day, and lunch. It’s such a delight to talk with librarians and mingle with them and hear what’s happening in their worlds.
–A Librarian’s Tea, which is an appreciation tea hosted by John Charles and Joanne Hamilton-Selway, who have published a new book, THE ULTIMATE READING GUIDE, a Complete Idiot’s Guide. They passed
out copies and we all reverently leafed through it, awash in the pleasure of remembering our favorites in many categories. Because it was a bunch of writers, we had read entire lists, of course. My nearly complete lists were popular fiction, romance fiction, literary fiction, and (surprise!) travel books. There are lists at the back for making lists of your own. It’s just being published, and I highly recommend it, especially for booksellers and librarians and readers. In other words, everyone.
–The Literacy signing, which was in a much airy than usual location. I saw lots of readers and friends.
–Dinner with my new/old editor, Shauna Summers, at Craft. The shortribs were divine.
–But naturally, the best adventure was with Christopher Robin, who took to heart the "ONE WORLD" tag of the Harlequin Party and found himself a sexy kilt. I leave you to judge the results for yourself. Photos courtesy of Melissa McClone, who posted a lot of wonderful photos of the conference on her blog.
This is always my favorite event. Hundreds of women, dressed in their finery, come to dance and dance and dance. Thanks to the good folks at Harlequin/Silhouette/Mira for hosting the bash year after year.
Christopher Robin, wearing Ancient Gunn. He’s qualified to wear Gordon tartan, but they didn’t have that one. This matched my scarf. Sort of.
My sandals are much cuter than they look in this photo. Not that anyone wears shoes for more than twenty minutes. Someone told me she had blisters on the bottom of her feet the next morning from dancing barefoot.
Enough for now. It’s been a very busy three weeks and I think I’ve earned the right to lie on the couch in the basement (where it’s cool) and read, read, read.